Key suspect in bank blast tied to armed raids

Police investigating a car bomb explosion outside the Bank of Greece last Thursday believe the prime suspect behind the attack – Revolutionary Struggle leader Nikos Maziotis – might have been involved in two armed robberies in the Peloponnese last month, Kathimerini has learned.

A source said there were “indications, not evidence, of the possible involvement of Maziotis” in a robbery at a branch of ATEbank in Kleitoria, Achaia prefecture, on March 10 and at a branch of Piraeus Bank in Dorio, Messinia, two weeks later.

Police already have linked Maziotis to another four armed raids, one last August in Velestino, in the central prefecture of Magnesia, and the other three in 2012. The 42-year-old has been at large since July 2012, when he violated the terms of his conditional release from prison. In all four raids, the perpetrators were armed with heavy weaponry such as Kalashnikov assault rifles and Skorpion submachine guns.

Police suspect that another missing terrorist – November 17 convict Christodoulos Xeros – might have helped Maziotis plan last Thursday’s car bomb attack outside the central bank, which caused damage but no injuries. Xeros has been at large since January, when he violated the terms of a prison furlough.

Maziotis and Xeros each have a 1-million-euro bounty on their head.

In a letter posted on an anarchist website recently Maziotis denied working with Xeros and participating in armed raids on banks.